Street names, or slang terms, for drugs are commonly used by people who manufacture, sell, or buy illicit drugs.
Slang terms are also used for some prescription drugs that are resold on the street.
Street Names For Illicit (Illegal) Drugs
Many illicit drugs are known by their street names. Street names can be used in order to avoid detection by law enforcement and avoid criminal penalties for drug possession or sales.
Heroin is an illicit opiate drug. Heroin is commonly sold in the form of a white powder, brown powder, or dark sticky substance known as black tar.
Some popular street names for heroin:
- China white
- brown sugar
A few popular street names for black tar heroin:
- Mexican mud
- black pearl
Cocaine And Crack Cocaine
Cocaine is an illicit stimulant drug that comes in powder form. It can be snorted, injected, or smoked in its rock-crystal form (crack cocaine).
Common street names for cocaine:
Common street names for crack cocaine:
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Methamphetamine (meth) is an illicit stimulant drug. It can come in the form of a powder, pill, or rock form (crystal meth).
A few popular street names for meth:
- crystal (crystal meth)
- glass (crystal meth)
Molly, also known as MDMA or ecstasy, is a psychoactive drug with stimulant and hallucinogenic properties. It’s often used as a “party drug” or “club drug”.
Some popular street names for molly:
- love drug
- vitamin E, X
Phencyclidine (PCP) is a dissociative, hallucinogenic drug. It is used recreationally as a party or club drug.
Some popular street names for PCP:
- angel dust
- rocket fuel
Lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD) is a hallucinogen drug similar to molly/MDMA, ketamine, and GHB.
Some popular street names for LSD:
- lucy in the sky with diamonds
- yellow sunshine
Psilocybin is a naturally occurring psychedelic drug in certain kinds of mushrooms.
Popular street names for psilocybin include:
- magic mushrooms
- purple passion
Ketamine is a dissociative drug that is used recreationally. It also has medical use in clinical settings as an anesthetic.
Popular street names for ketamine can include:
- special K
- vitamin K
- cat valium
Rohypnol (flunitrazepam) is a benzodiazepine that is illegal for all use in the United States.
Some popular street names for Rohypnol:
- date rape drugs
- forget-me pill
Cannabis, also known as marijuana, is a drug that has been decriminalized in almost all states, legalized for medical use in most states, and is fully legalized in select states.
Popular street names for marijuana include:
Popular Street Names For Prescription Drugs
Some prescription drugs, including prescription painkillers and anxiety medications, are misused for their effects.
Prescription drugs can be resold on the street and referred to by either their brand name, generic name, or street name.
Street Names For Opioid (Opiate) Prescription Drugs
Prescription opioids are misused by millions of Americans each year. Prescription opioid drugs may be referred to by their street names.
Street names for opioids include
- OxyContin (oxycodone) street names: OC, oxy, whites, buttons
- Percocet (oxycodone): hillbilly heroin
- Vicodin (hydrocodone) street names: Norco, vikes, vics, hydro
- Dilaudid (hydromorphone) street names: dillies, D, needle candy
- Ultram (tramadol) street names: chill pill, trammies, tramal
- morphine street names: morpho, first line, monkey
- fentanyl street names: apache, dragon, fenty, poison
- carfentanil: drop dead, serial killer, C.50
Street Names For Benzodiazepine Prescription Drugs (Benzos)
Benzodiazepines, or benzos, are a class of central nervous system depressants typically prescribed for anxiety disorders, panic attacks, and panic disorder.
Popular street names for benzodiazepines:
- Xanax (alprazolam) street names: xanies, handlebars, zanbars
- Valium (diazepam) street names: mother’s little helper, jellies, vallies
- Ativan (lorazepam) street names: downers, tranks, sleeping pills, candy
- Klonopin (clonazepam) street names: K, pin, super Valium
Street Names For Other Prescription Drugs
Prescription amphetamines and antidepressants like sertraline (Zoloft) can be resold on the street and referred to by certain slang terms.
Street names for amphetamines and antidepressants commonly include:
- Adderall street names: addies, bennies, speed, uppers
- Ritalin street names: the smart drug, kibbles and bits, vitamin R
- Vyvanse street names: same as amphetamines (e.g. uppers, speed, whizz)
- Zoloft street names: happy pill, miracle pill
Why Do People Use Street Names For Drugs?
Street names are often used to avoid detection by law enforcement, family members, healthcare professionals, and other loved ones.
Many common drugs of abuse—such as heroin and cocaine—are illegal to possess and sell. The use of street names can therefore be a preventative strategy to avoid facing criminal penalties.
Street names are also sometimes used by people struggling with drug abuse or drug addiction. These people may use common slang when buying drugs or talking to others who use drugs.
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Addiction Resource aims to provide only the most current, accurate information in regards to addiction and addiction treatment, which means we only reference the most credible sources available.
These include peer-reviewed journals, government entities and academic institutions, and leaders in addiction healthcare and advocacy. Learn more about how we safeguard our content by viewing our editorial policy.
- Alberta Health Services—Carfentanil
- National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL)—State Medical Marijuana Laws
- U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA)—Drug Slang Code Words DEA Intelligence Report
- U.S. National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA)—Commonly Used Drugs Charts